It seems that the inevitable is finally upon us and that the smartphone market is reaching at least in developed countries a saturation point. Although in India and partly in South America the boom is still going, in Africa it seems that it never took off as violently as it did in the Western World. In any case, the shipment of smartphones for this year is down around eighteen per cent and although a slump was expected, the additional fall of almost 3 per cent hit the market hard. Yes, the smartphone market is still growing, but it was booming until last year, so the predicted and expected income compared with true numbers will be perceived as a loss, particularly with companies that risked the most.
HTC for instance has been hit with losses ever since the HTC One, the first in the series, hit it big and pushed the expectations beyond reason. Nevertheless, HTC is not giving up, far from it, they expand in virtual reality and it is expected that HTC with additional legs to lean on will only return with a vengeance. Apple on the other hand is expecting a significant tumble in share value, with the fourth quarter estimated to be well beyond anything projected, but in negative. Apple was hit big with the China crisis and rumours come up where Apple will be transferring the manufacture from Foxconn City to a factory yet to be built by Foxconn in India.
Samsung is still the top kahuna in the game, with roughly 27 per cent share on the overall smartphone market. Huawei and Xiaomi have overtaken HTC and LG and are behind Apple in third and fourth places, respectively. Funny enough, Lenovo managed to sneak in behind Xiaomi in place five, but mostly because of the acquisition of the popular Motorola brand. In regards to the Operating System shares, Android is the lone leader with 83% market share, followed by iOS with some 13% and Microsoft’s Windows OS a distant third with 2.5%. BlackBerry is currently barely out of the statistic error range, which is probably why they finally built and plan to release an Android based smartphone, the BlackBerry Priv, formerly BlackBerry Venice.
Leaving the Google Apps aside, because most smartphones have them as bloatware and with over a billion unit shipped in last 12 months alone, the market share of those apps are undisputed. Same goes for applications that are found in almost every smartphone, such as Facebook, YouTube, WhatsApp and such, whereby Skype and Twitter are still topping there as well. Most popular games, with most downloads are Angry Birds by Rovio Entertainment, Fruit Ninja Free by Halfbrick Studios, Various Temple Run incarnations by Imangi Studios and virtual pet apps such as Pou by Zakeh and Talkin Tom franchise by Outfit7. Of applications the most popular are Instagram, Viber, Go Launcher, Flipboard, Amazon Kindle and the BlackBerry Messenger.